EMSA board to discuss exec's job
Embattled director is the only topic on the agenda for Tuesday's meeting
The board of directors governing Tulsa's emergency ambulance service has scheduled a Tuesday special meeting to discuss the employment of Executive Director Steve Williamson.
Emergency Medical Services Authority, which manages ambulance services for Oklahoma City as well as Tulsa, would not comment on the meeting, which will be held at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the Stroud Conference Center. The only topic on the agenda, however, is Williamson's employment.
Williamson, who has led EMSA since its organization in 1978, has come under fire for a variety of issues over the years. Most recently, he was named in a federal lawsuit claiming a $20 million kickback scheme involving a Texas contractor.
Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter joined the lawsuit in February, saying the alleged the kickbacks invalidated $64 million in Medicaid claims.
Expenses from the lawsuit prompted EMSA to seek an increase in the ambulance transport fee in Tulsa from $1,300 to $1,700. The Tulsa City Council rejected that request.
An EMSA fund controlled by the city could have been utilized for the legal expenses had the city not emptied it to balance its own budget.
Williamson also has been criticized in the past for expenses billed to EMSA, his compensation and billing practices that caused some users to pay twice for ambulance services.
EMSA is a public trust set up by the Oklahoma City and Tulsa municipal governments to oversee emergency medical services in those two cities and 11 other communities. Among those are Bixby, Jenks and Sand Springs.
It does this primarily through contracts with ambulance and emergency medical personnel providers.
According to its website, EMSA serves 1.1 million people annually.